The Cybershades are a creation of the Cybermen to be used as scouts and guards. They were designed to look like animals so that they would not attract too much attention. Unlike Cybermen, the Cybershades had pipes on their head resembling handle-bars, as opposed to the crest on top of Cybermen’s heads. The Cybershades were given the brains of cats or dogs (as opposed to human brains for Cybermen and the brains of small insects for Cybermats), so were unable to understand complex commands or speak. The Cybershades moved around on all fours rather than two legs like Cybermen, and were shown to possess vast physical strength, as seen when one Cybershade was able to pull both Jackson Lake and the Tenth Doctor across a floor while running.

A group of Cybershades as seen in The Next Doctor

Cybershades were able to scale buildings and leap at least 5 meters off the ground, as well as being able to land safely after falling (or jumping) from a great height. The Cybershades were created during the 19th century when the Cybermen escaped out of the Void. When the Cybermen allied with Mercy Hartigan, the Cybershades were placed under her command, with one being assigned to drive her horse and buggy. Two Cybershades accompanied Mercy when she became the Cyber King and took control of the Cybermen. The Cybershades exploded with Mercy when the Doctor gave Mercy back her emotions.